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Prince Harry Was Reportedly “In Tears” When He Learned That King Charles Gave Prince William a Role That, Had Harry Remained a Working Member of the Royal Family, Would Have Likely Been Given to Him

As Marie Claire reported yesterday, on the same day that Prince Harry arrived in the U.K. earlier this week, his father, King Charles, made Harry’s brother, Prince William, the leader of the regiment that Harry once served in—and new information is being reported that the move landed Harry in tears.

Harry is extremely proud (as anyone should be) of his military service; he is seen here yesterday at the 10-year anniversary celebration of the Invictus Games, which he founded to support those actively serving in the military as well as veterans. (Image credit: Getty Images)

Harry served in the British Army for 10 years, including two tours in Afghanistan. (Image credit: Getty Images)

On Tuesday, the King announced that the role of Colonel-in-Chief of the Army Air Corps—the regiment Harry served in during his service in Afghanistan—would officially be passed to William. “His Majesty the King will officially hand over the role of Colonel-in-Chief of the Army Air Corps to His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales,” a statement from Buckingham Palace read. According to The Independent , had Harry not stepped back as a working member of the royal family (which he did alongside wife Meghan Markle in 2020), the role would have likely gone to Harry.

The timing of the announcement is iffy at best, and The Mirror reports that Harry got emotional and was “in tears” at hearing the news of William’s appointment given by Charles—no doubt exacerbated by Charles’ apparent refusal to make time for his younger son while Harry was in the U.K. this week.

Both brothers, seen here in 2009, served in the military. (Image credit: Getty Images)

The timing of this week’s announcement seemed especially hurtful, as Harry returned to his home country of the U.K. to celebrate the Invictus Games. (Image credit: Getty Images)

“King Charles’ announcement that Prince Harry is being stripped of his role as Colonel-in-Chief of the Army Air Corps is a real kick in the teeth for the son who always felt marginalized and underrated,” royal author Tom Quinn told The Mirror . “What makes it much worse is that the role is being given to the very man who Harry sees as the cause of so many of his problems—his brother. And the announcement was deliberately made during Harry’s brief visit to the U.K. to have maximum impact—it shows Harry that he really is no longer welcome.”

Quinn claimed that senior royals knew that the announcement would “really hurt” Harry: “He is said to have been in tears when he heard,” Quinn said. “But they have decided the gloves are off and that Harry needs to realize that when you betray the family, you don’t just escape the things you hated doing as a working royal. You also lose the things you loved.”

Harry has long considered his military service some of the most fulfilled times of his life. (Image credit: Getty Images)

William, seen here in 2009, was a helicopter pilot with the RAF’s Search and Rescue Force. (Image credit: Getty Images)

William will assume his new role in short order, next Monday to be exact. (Image credit: Getty Images)

William is expected to take over the role soon—on May 13, this upcoming Monday.

Harry remains extremely proud of his decade of service in the British Army, which included two tours in Afghanistan. Quinn added that “Harry feels his time in the military was a rare happy time in his life when he was judged on his merits as a man, not on his merits as a member of the royal family,” he said. “Having always hated being the spare in terms of the succession, he now finds that one of the few important roles he had as the younger brother has now been handed over to the person Harry himself described as his nemesis. Harry cannot fail to get the message—his last few ties to his old life are being cut, and he is being set adrift, permanently.”

Had Harry not resigned his post as a working member of the royal family, this role was expected to be his. (Image credit: Getty Images)

Harry served in the British Army from 2005 to 2015. (Image credit: Getty Images)

Reports have surfaced from royal experts Hugo Vickers and Arthur Edwards that the King could have made time to see Harry this week had he really wanted to, and from Charlotte Griffiths that William (as well as Queen Camilla) likely played a factor in Charles’ ultimate decision not to see his younger son this week.

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